Montreal centre Alex Galchenyuk converted a rebound just 72 seconds into the additional period as the Canadiens beat the Rangers 3-2 at Madison Square Garden.
Galchenyuk reacted quickest, pouncing on Tomas Plekanec’s deflected effort to send the puck past Rangers goalkeeper Henrik Lundqvist and end game three in dramatic fashion.
The Canadiens trail 2-1 in the best-of-seven series, with game four returning to New York on Sunday.
New York were looking to take a commanding 3-0 lead and they put themselves on track courtesy of Carl Hagelin, who opened the scoring in the 16th minute.
The Canadiens eventually hit back, with Andrei Markov levelling proceedings after more than three minutes of play in the second stanza – the Russian’s first goal of the play-offs.
New York continued to dominate but were unable to find a way past rookie goaltender Dustin Tokarski, who did not look out of place in the absence of injured regular Carey Price.
The Canadiens took full advantage deep in the third period when Danny Briere scored with just over three minutes left on the clock.
But the Rangers refused to surrender and forced overtime after Chris Kreider deflected Dan Girardi’s shot, which hit Montreal’s Alexei Emelin before breaching Tokarski, who finished with 35 saves.
That was as good as it got for the Rangers, however, as the Canadiens ended their six-game losing streak to the New York franchise courtesy of Galchenyuk’s OT winner.
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